Wednesday, February 22, 2012



     Put in a bowl some toasted bread;  add six ounces of sugar, one lump of sugar saturated in orange-flower essence; grate half a nutmeg and mix it with the same quantity of cinnamon and ginger in powder.  
     Put this in the bowl together with a quart of good ale, one bottle sherry, and a little soda water.  

     The soda water is the least important of these ingredients and can be dispensed with.



     In a quart of white wine soak for two days five grammes of juniper berries, fifteen grammes of Calisaia (a kind of Peruvian bark) and fifteen of bitter quassia.   

     Filter the liquid and mix with an equal quantity of bitter orange syrup.  Drink a Madeira glass of this every day. 

(Warmly recommended by an aged friend.)

From:  Norman Douglas, Venus In The Kitchen, Kingswood, Surrey, England, 1952).

Painting:  Dante Gabriel Rossetti, The Loving Cup, 1867, National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo.

Dedication:  JRR on his birthday.


  1. What great recipes for whatever ails one.

    Loving Cup we used make as children, without the added liquer -We called it goody. I think it was a made up name!

    Helen x

  2. The subtitle of Norman Douglas's wonderful book, which he published under the pseudonym Pilaff Bey (claiming "editorship" for himself) is "Recipes For Seduction," and it purports to be a book of aphrodisiac recipes. I can't vouch for that, but many of the recipes in the book sound delicious and they're all interesting to read. Halo Books in San Francisco republished Venus In The Kitchen in paperback in 1992 and it should still be available. Apart from the pleasure of owning it personally (and reading it and cooking from it), it makes a wonderful present for sympathetic friends or people you might wish to shock. Curtis